Shana M. Brown

Shana M. Brown is a senior research director in the Education and Child Development Studies department. Her primary areas of expertise are multi-mode longitudinal data collection efforts (Web-based, Mail with CADE, and CATI) and large-scale, nationally representative school-based studies.

In her approximately twenty years at NORC, Brown has developed data collection protocols for large-scale, multi-mode survey efforts, including locating, contacting schedules (including telephone, mailing, and email contacts), data retrieval of critical items, incentive distribution, collection of extant documents and data, and contacting experiments. On her projects, she has led the development of Web-based, CADE, and CATI survey instruments in addition to complementary integrated case management systems, including receipt control and locating interfaces. Brown has managed extensive occupation, IPEDS, and "other specify" coding operations which utilize ancillary questionnaire data and previous survey round responses. Having worked on a number of federally-funded studies, Brown has experience with the preparation of OMB packages, as well as internal IRB submissions. In her work on school-based studies, Brown has been integral in the sampling process, both at the institutional and individual levels, and understands the complexity of district cooperation in order to survey school-level respondents.

Brown currently serves as the Survey Data Collection Lead on the 2021 High School & Beyond (HS&B) Follow-up Study. HS&B is a national longitudinal study originally funded by the United States Department of Education’s National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) as a part of their longitudinal studies program. NORC developed the original sample design and performs the data collection for the study. After a baseline in 1980 of sophomore and senior cohorts, a nationally representative subsample was selected for follow-up in their early adult years and subsequently in mid-life. The 2021 follow-up will survey both cohorts, using a multimode design, and will examine the lifelong educational and social processes that influence the risk of Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer's Disease / Alzheimer's Disease-Related Dementias. The study will do this through a combination of survey data collection, including cognitive assessments, and the collection of biomarkers. The study is sponsored by the National Institute on Aging and NORC is working with researchers at the University of Minnesota, University of Texas at Austin, and University of Wisconsin.

Brown is also the project director for the Study of the American Law School Dean, a project sponsored by the Association of American Law Schools. This study will examine the career pathways of - and challenges facing - U.S. law school deans. NORC will survey current and former deans from AALS' 198 member and fee-paid law schools. She is also project director for the 2019 Follow-up to the College Application Process Survey, sponsored by Carnegie Corporation of New York. In partnership with Bottom Line and with researchers Benjamin Castleman (University of Virginia) and Andrew Barr (Texas A&M), NORC conducted a follow-up study with individuals that were part of Castleman and Barr’s 2015 randomized high school graduation cohort to seek further evidence about the effects of the Bottom Line’s advising and mentoring programs.

From 2005-2019, Brown served as associate project director of the Survey of Doctorate Recipients (SDR), a biennial, NSF-sponsored study of the career paths of doctorate holders. As this longitudinal study is fully tri-mode, with Web, Mail survey, and CATI components in addition to an extensive locating effort before and during survey data collection, she understands the challenges of surveys with multiple data collection modes and maintaining a sample over time. The SDR is made up of U.S.-trained doctorate recipients who are now located across the globe and incorporates an adaptive design to appropriately manage the volume of sample members (120,000). Brown has played a major role on such significant, longitudinal education studies as the National Longitudinal Study of No Child Left Behind (NLS-NCLB) and the National Longitudinal Evaluation of Comprehensive School Reform (NLECSR). Each of these studies, funded by the U.S. Department of Education, surveyed a wide range of educational players. In addition, she served as project director for the District Survey component of the Texas Public Education Cuts Impact Assessment as well as associate project director for the Youth Culture Survey, a national RDD survey sponsored by the University of Chicago, which explored the opinions of youths and young adults as part of the larger Black Youth Project.